Two Nigerian Journalists claim 2014 CNN Multichoice African Journalist Award

By Seye Joseph – @Seyetweets

Obinna Emelike of Business Day Newspaper and Olatunji Olalade of The Nation Newspaper had won

the 2014 CNN Multichoice African Journalist Award in Culture and Health categories of the award.

The award that awarded at the Gala Awards ceremony held at Mlimani City Conference Centre, in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania is an annual event to award creativity, excellence and commitment in journalism.

Emelike was honoured in his entry that was titledThe roads between us…..a journey across Nigeria’. His article was based both on a travel and culture story of two Africans from different parts of the continent coming together to explore northern Nigeria. It is written as a first-hand account, much like a diary, full of humour and life.

Obinna admits his attempt show the beauty of Northern Nigeria to his new friend without highlighting the political challenges the area faces. The author has a lovely way of making fun of himself –whether it is for the lack of his knowledge of this area or lack of the local language. A truly fun and delightful tale of Africans coming together and discovering their culture.”

Ololade’s story titled: “This marriage will kill me – Tragedy of Nigeria’s child brides” provides the challenge of making often complicated and technical issues understandable and readable. He produced a moving account of Nigeria’s child brides and a close look at the devastating medical and personal implications of forcing young teenagers to marry much older men.

The account is a major story on a widespread problem written with a deep sense of humanity, and an excellent attention to detail. The medical issues are set out with clarity and the result leaves one with a tangible sense of the horrors of this practice and the long-term trauma.

Other Nigerians who were also recognized with Certificates of Commendation among other fourteen journalist in the award are Ben Ezeamalu and Emmanuel Ogala of Premium Times, and Bayo Olupohunda, a Columnist with Punch Newspaper.

Kenyan journalist Joseph Mathenge claimed the overall prize at this year’s CNN MultiChoice African Journalist 2014 Awards Ceremony.

Mathenge was awarded the overall ‘CNN MultiChoice African Journalist of the Year’ Award for his work ‘Images of Terror’, which appeared in Kenyan daily print newspaper The Standard and was chosen from entries spanning 38 nations across the African continent.

The article documents the moments of terror experienced by Westgate Mall shoppers in Kenya, when the mall was attacked by unidentified gunmen in September 2013.

In his words, Mathenge said “It’s a great honor, and I’m humbled to receive this award. All finalists who are here deserve this award. I hope it will motivate men, women and children of good will all over the world to fight terrorism. Memories fade with time, but pictures don’t. We felt it necessary to capture each and every moment so that generations to come may see the horror.”

The President of Tanzania, Jakaya Kikwete Nico Meyer, the CEO MultiChoice Africa, Nico Meyer and SVP International Newsgathering TV and Digital, CNN International, Deborah Rayner, presented Mathenge with the Award at a Gala Awards ceremony.

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